Self-care is an extremely important aspect to focus on during the recovery process. Learning to incorporate self-care habits into your recovery can help you establish a sense of balance and develop a structure for life after treatment.
Ensuring you obtain some form of physical activity every day can increase levels of serotonin and endorphins, which increase overall levels of happiness. To maintain a base level of self-care through exercise, you only need approximately 30 minutes a day of moderate activity.
Get Adequate Nutrition
A healthy diet is an essential aspect of self-care that will produce improvements in your overall well-being. Getting adequate nutrition does not mean you are required to eat only healthy meals and never enjoy dessert. It simply involves learning to manage your portion sizes and include fruits and vegetables in your diet when possible.
Keeping an overall healthy diet can help your body feel better as a whole and maintain a higher level of energy throughout the day. Ensuring you are eating enough to keep your body fueled and functioning properly can help you to physically feel better when experiencing withdrawal symptoms.
Find something enjoyable and add it to your schedule. Time set aside to do things that are fun and enjoyable is essential for your recovery progress. If you are fully focused on recovering and do not allow yourself some time to step back and enjoy yourself and your progress, the likelihood of relapse is increased. It can be difficult to further succeed in your recovery plan if you find no enjoyment in the process.
Developing a sense of appreciation for yourself and your surroundings can improve your overall attitude toward your existence and increase gratitude for what you have. Reaching this level of appreciation often takes a great deal of practice. Practicing a variety of meditation forms, keeping a gratitude journal, and working to restructure your attitude about everyday situations can help you reach this point of appreciation. This aspect of self-care is fully based upon your thoughts and your mind, influencing the way you view reality.
Rest and Recharge
Consistently engaging in the work of recovery can become tiring quickly and can easily get overwhelming. If you feel high levels of stress about your responsibilities and work in recovery, take a step back to rest and recharge. This may mean going to bed for the night and ensuring you are well-rested. This could also mean taking a quick nap during the day or stepping away from your surroundings to get a breath of fresh air.
If you can feel your emotions heightening, cravings setting in, or any symptom of substance use disorder starting to overwhelm you, allow yourself to deal with the emotions you are feeling. Do what is necessary to ground yourself and use your coping mechanisms to return to a healthy mental state. Allowing yourself to step away from a situation and ease your emotions can help you prevent a buildup of stress within your body. This strategy allows you to take good care of your mind as well as your body.
Use Self-Care Strategies in Recovery
As you may have noticed, many strategies to incorporate self-care into your recovery are the same strategies you would use to improve your overall health. The truth of it is, if your overall health is better, your body will feel better. Keeping yourself healthy and maintaining self-care are essentially the same thing. Basic self-care practices can improve your overall functioning through the recovery process and maintain success after completing recovery.
Implementing each of these aspects into recovery can be relatively simple. As part of your recovery plan, you most likely have a list of long- and short-term goals. Adding to that list of goals, you can create goals based on your exercise, nutrition, and enjoyment. These goals could be ensuring you eat sufficient calories every day, cutting out sugar, beating your record time running a mile, starting a new hobby, or improving in a current hobby. There are many ways to incorporate self-care practices into your overall recovery goals.
After implementing these self-care practices catered to your lifestyle, you may find a drastic increase in overall well-being. These practices can eventually become habits and help you establish a structure outside of treatment. These goals can consistently be adjusted as you focus on a new aspect of self-care, always leading to further improvement.
Your Time to Shine
Every day is a new day and a fresh start. Once the sun comes up again, it is your time to shine. Throughout the day, think about the decisions you are making and if they have a positive effect on your self-care. This reflection process can help you disengage from activities and habits that are causing you to feel down and work toward a life full of self-care.
Implementing consistent self-care practices into your recovery can help you establish a routine that encourages you to maintain the progress you make throughout treatment. Caring for yourself, both body and mind, is extremely important through recovery and enables you to work toward your best self. Engaging in moderate exercise for 30 minutes a day, eating nutritious meals, engaging in enjoyable activities, and resting when needed are all practices you can implement into your daily recovery routine to ensure you are caring for yourself. Caring for yourself is a very important aspect of recovery. Incorporating these practices into your recovery goals can be as simple as a minor adjustment to a previous goal or the addition of a new goal to your plan. Self-care is important to consider during recovery to avoid falling into a negative state. To learn more about how to incorporate these strategies into your recovery plan, reach out to Dream Recovery at (949) 732-1960.